It’s week two of this Stock*Pile character redesign thing we’ve got going on and this time around my assignment comes from Tony Sedani.
Tony sez: Rian brings a lot of unique and out of the box ideas to his designs. And that is what the stale Dr. Strange needs right now.
So, I don’t know how “unique” or “out of the box” this redesign is. In fact, it’s almost more of a de-design than a redesign since I took away pretty much everything about Dr. Strange’s look that makes him visually stand out. My first instinct when tackling this redesign was to focus more on the “sorcerer” in “Sorcerer Supreme”. I Googled wizards, mages, shamans, and the like, then sketched out some old-timey robes, tunics, and such. I even dabbled in tattoos and a hood to replace the big, ornate collar of the Cloak Of Levitation (the official name for Doc’s cape).
When none of those looks struck my fancy, I went in the exact opposite direction and began modernizing Dr. Strange’s attire. After Excising al lot of the character’s classic design elements I was left with a completely normal looking guy in a sweater vest and leather gloves, and figured I’d have to once again start over with an entirely new approach. That’s when I dug a little deeper into the good doctor’s Wikipedia page and discovered that Stan Lee and Steve Ditko’s initial influence for Dr. Strange were a series of popular 1930’s radio serials about a character called Chandru The Magician. Right then and there I decided to keep the down-to-Earth look I’d worked out and re-imagine Dr. Strange as a sort of mystical Indiana Jones rather than a superhero who needs an ornate costume.
I gave my Dr. Strange a pair of gloves to conceal his scarred hands (from the accident that first made him give up the surgeon game), a shoulder-slung bag to tote around the Book Of The Vishanti and other mystical artifacts he may require, and that symbol from his classic costume on his chest just to make him even the slightest bit recognizable as the character he’s derived from. I also kept the mustache because…well, why wouldn’t you?